This easy orange chicken recipe is the orange chicken that you are familiar with in most Chinese restaurants. It’s crispy and coated with a sweet orange sauce.
It's one of the most popular Chinese dishes in the US. Though there are variations, we’ll make it just like it is served in popular restaurants. Chicken breasts are cubed, battered, and deep-fried. They are then tossed in an orange sauce to make the chicken moist and tangy.
What You’ll Need to Make Orange Chicken
You’ll have most items, tools, and ingredients in your kitchen or find them readily in your grocery store. There are a few unusual items or items that you may not be familiar with. We offer most on our web site.
- Orange Sauce: You’ll need a good orange sauce to coat the chicken. You’ll see our favorite below but you’ll find others at the grocery store.
- Tempura Batter Mix: Tempura batter is used with seafood and vegetables. It gives food a thick or a thin smooth coating depending on the application. You’ll use this with your orange chicken.
- A Thermometer: It is important to cook the chicken at the right temperature. If it is too hot, the chicken burns. If not hot enough, it is greasy. We use a simple candy thermometer that clips to the side of the pan.
- A Wok, Stir-Fry Pan, or Deep Nonstick Skillet: Woks and stir fry pans are shaped for stir-frying and disperse heat up the sides of the pans and heat the food quickly and evenly. We love our stir-fry pan.
Easy Orange Chicken Recipe
For the chicken:
- 3-4 cups of chicken breast cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 cups tempura batter mix
- vegetable oil for frying
- Make an egg wash by whisking the two eggs with two tablespoons of water. Pour into a large dish.
- Add the tempura batter mix to another flat-bottomed dish. Separate any clumps.
- Dip each chicken cube in the egg mixture and then in the dry tempura mix. Repeat the process, dipping the coated chicken again in egg and then the tempura mix. This double-dipping process is important to create extra-crispy chicken.
- Pour three to four inches of vegetable oil in a deep, heavy pan. Heat the oil until it reaches 350° using a deep-frying thermometer. Fry the chicken pieces until they are crispy and golden brown. Remove with a stainless steel strainer. Place the fried chicken onto a plate lined with a paper towel to absorb excess oil. Set aside.
For the sauce:
- 1 cup Iron Chef Orange Sauce or equal
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon water, divided
- Thin the dipping sauce by mixing the orange sauce and water in a wok or deep skillet.
- Make a paste of the cornstarch by stirring it in a small bowl with 1/2 tablespoon of the water until smooth. Then add the rest of the water and continue stirring using a whisk. Cook the sauce mixture until it is bubbly and thickens.
- To assemble and serve your orange chicken, add the fried chicken to the sauce in the pan and stir until the chicken is coated and heated through. Serve immediately.
(Updated from February 27, 2018)